Friday, October 12, 2018

Theory Of Ruin - Counter Culture Nosebleed

Label: Escape Artist
Year: 2002

Alex Newport spent the first part of the 1990's plying a thick noise sludge that flirted ever so slightly around the edges of "alternative rock", with his band Fudge Tunnel. You probably heard them at some point or another. Or, at least you should have heard them. Still could if you wanted.
Then, in the middle of the 1990's he hooked up (not in a Biblical sense...I don't think) with Sepultura mainman Max Cavalera to create a metallic, grinding, grooving, hardcore, industrial-adjacent monster with Nailbomb. They had one proper album that is a legit classic of the genre(s), which again, I feel like you've no doubt heard it. Still out there for you to hear in the off chance you were born too late (Saint Vitus ref!).
So after the relative success of Nailbomb Mr. Newport dives headlong into production for the last half of the 1990s, with no real new musical output of his own to speak of. Now this is just my own hypothesis, but, this is also just my own blog at this point, so it's kind of a lawless place where unchecked hypothesis can just go flying around willy-nilly with nary a ramification or consequence. Liberating. But anyway, it's my guess that while producing the underrated S.F. band Totimoshi, Alex Newport gets a jolt of inspiration to strap on his guitar again and rattle off a handful of noise rock inspired rippers. Some of the old Fudge Tunnel grime is still there. Some of the old alternative rock tendencies are still there. And there's a scant whiff of the old Nailbomb "Earache-cum-Alternative Tentacles-cum-Wax Trax" all out assault.
But mostly it's an urgent, beefy, take on the noise rock touchstones you know and love, as filtered through a post hardcore lens. Two great tastes?

Lest I make it sound like a solo act, rest assured the rhythm section of Theory Of Ruin most definitelty holds is down. Ches Smith, who played with The Secret Chiefs 3, John Zorn, Trevor Dunn, Xiu Xiu, and Elliot Sharp (and a million others), is on drums. David Link, who cut his teeth in the weirdly heavy Boston noise rock scene of the early 90's in Claymore, and then went on to play with Slapshot(?!) and Give, is on bass.


Monday, October 8, 2018

Logh - The Contractor and The Assassin

Label: Bad Taste
Year: 2003

Following up on that Mogwai post down there (i'm pointing with my index finger towards the floor [of my house]), here's another European post-rock early Nineties release for you to have on in the background as you prepare your family a hearty and delicious One Pot Vegan White Bean Shakshuka (here's the's delicious, but I would recommend adjusting the spice to taste, i.e. adding more), or decompress from a day at the office and contemplate a crisp glass of the local lager of your choice (just kidding, I meant to say "as you shotgun your third Coors Light of the evening").
Difference between this band and Mogwai is that Logh incorporates more vocals, and does not punctuate their song dynamics with the "big riff". Instead, they opt for a more organically composed slow build that gets to "indie rock speed" and settles in. Sometimes it simmers and takes on a slow shimmering expansive tremolo, but mostly it ebbs and flows in a natural sense.
The first track has a very Retribution Gospel Choir feel to it. If that means anything to you.
Other bands you may or may not hear in the mix are; Aereogramme, Explosions In The Sky, Tortoise, and the aforementioned Mogwai.
One member spent time in heavy duty crushers Cult Of Luna, which is how they originally came across my radar.


Friday, October 5, 2018

Capricorns - Ruder Forms Survive

Label: Rise Above
Year: 2005

Why let some barking dog get in the way of your good (bad) time? Capricorns don't fuck with no damn dogs, and they seem positively optimistic.
Truth be told, Capricorns will, on occasion "fuck with a damn dog" and allow some vocals into the mix, as evidenced on the third track here, which features a top dog, Eugene Robinson(of Oxbow). So, I just wanted you to be aware.
Dogs aside, Capricorns specialize in a real real potent version of instrumental heavy wallop, that works on wave after wave of gross sludgy riff after gross sludgy riff, with a math-y kind of aftertaste, set off by the occasional quiet interlude. I mean, your mom is going to say, "turn off that heavy metal". But you're mom is probably a cunt who couldn't tell the difference between American Heritage and Old Man Gloom (no offense to your mom), so she should respectfully shut the fuck up about what's going on in the sanctity of your bedroom (ever consider moving out though? For real?).

If you want something heavy, that isn't stupid, this is a good one.


Thursday, October 4, 2018

Mogwai - Mr. Beast

Label: [PIAS] Recordings
Year: 2006

It's all the Mogwai you want. The slow, epic, swelling builds. The regal, post rock towering riff dynamics. The pastoral longview across time and space. That famous Scottish optimism.
Sorry, I misspelled "dour self-deprecation", my mistake.
The guy from Envy sings on one of the songs. Which, by the way, is anyone else here old enough to remember when Envy was a hardcore band? Hell, how about when they were called Blind Justice? Cause, no joke, I knew them as this kinda straight edge hardcore band, and I didn't realize they had morphed into some sort of post rock something or other, but by the time they did I had checked out on Envy (super open minded guy that I am), and missed that whole thing. I would go back now and look into it...but...pretty sure there's an episode of COPS on television that I've only seen 8 times.


Monday, October 1, 2018

Full Color Dream - What Do I Owe You

Label: self released
Year: 2018

Second quick hit of the evening.
This band is a three piece from Oklahoma, but beyond that, I have no clue who or what or when or why.
Four songs here that draw from post hardcore, shoegaze, and fuzzy indie rock. Three great tastes that go great together.
I do not believe the title of this ep is a question.
I'm giving it two thumbs up.
My own thumbs, mind you.


Sunstroke - Second Floor

Label: self released
Year: 2018

Look, I'm sorry that I've been gone the last couple of weeks but I "had a headache" when it comes to blogging. Or maybe it was my time of the month?
I don't really know, and let's be honest with each other, I don't really know that you care.

Alas though. Here I be.
And here be a couple quick hitters to ease back into it.

First up today, a three song promo from this Philadelphia band to herald the impending release of their next full length. To wet the proverbial whistle. As it were. As you are.
Now, the moisture level of, whistle, in this instance will be relative to your appreciation of Rites Of Spring styled post hardcore propulsive melodies, as funneled through a Verbal Assault-cum- Swiz bit of muscle. It's very distinctly got a 1987 D.C. edge (pun not intended), but maintains a vital contemporary energy that keeps this out of the "historical reenactment| trip.

Count this whistle as one of the wetter ones you'll encounter on this day. I'm ready!

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